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Budget Protest at Parliament today

Written By: - Date published: 11:26 am, May 19th, 2011 - 54 comments
Categories: budget 2011, democratic participation, Unions - Tags:

Unions and community groups don’t need to wait till after the Budget is read to know they’ve been screwed.  They’re gathering today at Parliament at 12pm for a protest rally – come along if you’re in town.

I was talking to a union organiser today who said that one of her main worksites – politically apathetic most times (with all the love in the world) is up in arms over National’s cuts to KiwiSaver and Working for Families.  They’re feeling pissed and betrayed and who can blame them.  With any luck they’ll still feel like that in November.

54 comments on “Budget Protest at Parliament today”

  1. PeteG 1

    Odd timing, presuming they don’t know the details of the budget.

    The union protest will feature speakers including Labour leader Phil Goff, the Greens’ Metiria Turei, CTU president Helen Kelly and Alan Johnson from the Salvation Army.

    They aim to speak out about cuts to social and public services and send the message that all it will do is increase hardship, poverty and unemployment.

    If they prove to have guessed wrong will they have a retraction protest tomorrow?

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      They didn’t “guess” wrong.

    • Deadly_NZ 1.2

      Jesus peteg Did you not even read the first line of the article???? Hang on I’ll save you the bother of using the page up key.
      here is the first line.
      “Unions and community groups don’t need to wait till after the Budget is read to know they’ve been screwed”

      Now unless you think they are psychic, then they are just people using that what god gave them but you seem to have been overlooked, the ability to reason and work things out. train of thought prob goes like this Last budget Crap, Services cut, wages static or dropping, prices soaring, comodities soaring, Earthquake, bail out for rich old bastards who played in the dodgy markets , making sure they don’t lose anything, may need a donation later, So when looking at all this and more they came to the thundering conclusion.

      WE ARE GOING TO GET SCREWED!

  2. chris 2

    The usual suspects. ‘The lets protest any way march’. ‘Gimee gimme – as its all about me’. The ‘yes lets make cuts as long as I’am not effected mentality’. Is this the way to equality ? me thinks not.

    • Ari 2.1

      Well, at least the last three words seem true.

      A recession is the time you’re supposed to be really careful about making sure you’re spending money on high-multiplier programs, like the ones the government is so fond of cutting, and perhaps think about cutting some of the spending that’s less useful, such as contracting out work that the government itself could do more cheaply and just as well.

  3. Tammy Gordon 3

    I would give anything in the world to be able to announce a retraction tomorrow saying we got it all wrong and there will be no cuts to KiwiSaver, WFF, Student loans or public services. Somehow I don’t think that’s going to happen though. But do you want to make it interesting, Pete G?

    • PeteG 3.1

      What about if there were acceptable adjustments to them considering the circumstances?

      Or do you think that government benefits, credits and services should only every remain the same or increase, and they should never decrease no matter what the economic conditions are like?

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        When economic conditions are tough and private sector spending is falling, the Goverment must raise new revenue from the wealthy and spend more into the economy.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.2

        Here’s the first headline from Stuff for you: “Working for families cuts bigger than expected”.

        • joe bloggs 3.1.2.1

          Under today’s changes the total cost of the WFF scheme will be trimmed by 4%, dropping from $2.8 billion now to $2.6 billion by 2015. That’s $200m in cuts by 2015, targeting families with working age children – neither earthshattering nor “bigger than expected”.

          New operating spending of around $4 billion which is tightly focused on frontline health and education services – a positive move.

          Compulsory employer contributions to Kiwisaver to rise to 3% – that’s a 50% increase over the current level – makes up for the reduction in Govt support.

          The “repayment holiday” for borrowers based overseas will be cut from three years to one year – at long bloody last! These pricks who hive off overseas after racking up huge debts take twice as long to repay their loans as those of us who have chosen to stay in NZ. About time they were brought back to play on the same level playing field as the rest of us.

          Student loan defaulters will have no more access to loans – the previous Labour government allowed student loan defaulters to borrow yet more under the loan scheme. Good to see that rort addressed.

          All kudos to the Nats for a fiscally responsible approach to a very difficult economic climate.

          • mickysavage 3.1.2.1.1

            JB the figures are premised on considerable growth.  They expect 4% this year.  There is not the slightest chance that this will occur and when it does not occur we are suddenly in a big financial hole.  This really is smokes and mirrors stuff.

            • PeteG 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Do you think they should be cutting expenditure more just in case?

              • No I think that they should tax the wealthy so that the deficit is addressed.
                 
                Audrey Young in the Herald says this:
                 

                Bill English’s plan to return the country to surplus sounds good but feels flimsy.
                It is based on heroic assumptions of a strong economic economy, high wage growth and and nothing going wrong.

                 

                • PeteG

                  Labour would be backing the ponzi treadmill growth strategy too wouldn’t they?

                  John Pagani on Stuff says “there is nothing here to create faster growth”.

                  Maybe we need to consider alternatives to continued growth to try and pay for yesterday.

                  • Judging by their past performance they will pay debt off and create jobs.
                     
                    I see the CT attack lines are being fed to the trolls …

                • joe bloggs

                  If tax, tax and more tax is Labour’s answer to the current economic climate then you’re welcome to the opposition benches.

                  Better to control spending than more death by a thousand taxes.

                  You might not appreciate the colour of this budget but Standard and Poors certainly does.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Ah yes, Standard & Poors, one of the ratings agencies that gave sub-prime home loans Triple A ratings. Going from their past performance I don’t think that listening to them is a credible way to make decisions for our future.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    You might not appreciate the colour of this budget but Standard and Poors certainly does.

                    Which would be why they took us off negative outlook yeah?

                    Nah.

                    So according to S&P this budget changes nothing.

            • Peter 3.1.2.1.1.2

              The billion dollar question, where will growth come from? They don’t say do they.

              • PeteG

                We must grow our exports – maybe they should consider double bunking cows.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  We’re already doing that – it’s where all the pollution in our rivers and lakes is coming from.

          • lprent 3.1.2.1.2

            Compulsory employer contributions to Kiwisaver to rise to 3% – that’s a 50% increase over the current level – makes up for the reduction in Govt support.

            You mean after they dropped the level from 4% down to 2% in 2008? Don’t be more of a fool than usual.

            You forgot that the arseholes are planning to sell off many remaining assets to overseas ownership. Did you notice that there is no limitation of sales to foreign owners?

            • RobC 3.1.2.1.2.1

              Not to mention the employer contribution will now be taxed. FFS joe bloggs read and understand before you open your mouth

  4. ZeeBop 4

    Debt was Labours problem, inherited from them, that’s why John Key found
    the money to drop the top rate of tax and send us into massive borrowing.

    Looking backwards, English promises to repeat the tried and trued solutions
    that worked so well because oil was in real terms getting cheaper. This
    is now no longer the case. Its like a car owner saying he can drive
    as far on the same amount of money he did a decade ago, sure if you
    ignore the current price of oil, and the future of peak oil scarcity.

    Its a shameful waste of a taxpayers money to fund a bunch of lying
    blind morons who run our country.

  5. Bernard Hickey is picking up on the heroic assumption theme:
     

    The government has bet the economy will come right and it doesn’t need to significantly cut government spending to get its borrowing under control.
    That all makes sense if you believe in GDP growth rates of 1.8 per cent, 4.0 per cent and 3.0 per cent over the next three years.
    The trouble is the Treasury has overestimated GDP growth rates since 2008 by around 2-3 percentage points of GDP as households and businesses elected to repay debt.
    The government is essentially betting that households and businesses will start borrowing again and stop repaying so much debt.
    That’s an heroic assumption given household debt to disposable income ratios are still well above anything normal and the sort of growth implied by Treasury’s forecasts will be accompanied by floating mortgage rates of close to 8 per cent.
    The government has not understood that this time it is different, as Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart wrote in their analysis of economic growth and debt levels after the financial crises of the last century. Economic growth is significantly slower for up to a decade after a crisis, particularly when a nation is labouring under heavy debt, as New Zealand is.

    The National Party, making shit up so that it can be reelected and sell all our stuff …
     

  6. And Brian Fallow has seen the same thing:
     

    This may well have been a good Budget – if it was delivered this time next year.
    Right now it is risky to freeze government spending.
    It is based on a strong pick-up in the economy.
    But that recovery at this point only exists in economists’ forecasts.
    It is not there yet, plain for all to see, in the data coming out of Statistics NZ.
    There are huge uncertainties around the forecasts and the risks, as economists like to say, are “to the downside”.

  7. David Cunliffe also has a comment:
     

    National is also pinning its hopes on growth that it has failed to deliver in the past three years. With no sign of an economic plan from this government there is no reason to think that these growth projections will materialise.
    This is more of the same from National. Every budget it has promised that growth is just around the corner. Every time that growth hasn’t occurred and the government has had to borrow more instead.
    The lack of an economic development plan is breath-taking. There is no credible strategy for jobs and growth. National is completely out of ideas.
    There is no plan to grow savings and capital sufficiency or improve investment incentives for a modern high-value economy.

    The thing that really attracts attention is that Blinglish has used Treasury’s more rosy predictions of tax income and ignored a more conservative IRD prediction that was $4 billion lower.
     
    New Zealand, you have been conned.

  8. burt 8

    I saw the idiots. How can you possibly explain to people who think they know in advance what is in the budget that tax payer funded KiwiSaver is like playing the pokies. The govt extracts more money from you than it can ever return to you because it had administration costs – the we call it free money. So they protest wanting the govt to take probably close to $2,000 off them so it can give them $1,040 back ! Yeah – churn rocks !

    • Lanthanide 8.1

      I seriously doubt there are $960 in admin fees for every member of kiwisaver who gets the government tax matching. Assuming we have 1 million people that qualify for at least some of it, that would be $960m just in administration costs.

      Try again, burt.

      • felix 8.1.1

        Sorry Lanth, burt thought it up more than a week ago.

        I tells ya it’s locked in now and no amount of logic or simple maths is ever gonna shift it.

        • burt 8.1.1.1

          felix

          Tax payer funded (dollar for dollar matching up to $1,040) for KiwiSaver is not redistribution, it is not taking from anyone to give to someone else – it is only paid to people who pay enough tax to have enough spare to contribute to KiwiSaver – Why do you defend it like it is redistribution from the wealthy to the needy – it is not.

          • Lanthanide 8.1.1.1.1

            pssst, burt, you get the “tax credit” if you put in $1040 to kiwisaver. It doesn’t matter how much tax you actually paid. This means beneficiaries can also get $1040 worth of “tax credits” every year if they deposit $1040 in their kiwisaver.

            • burt 8.1.1.1.1.1

              OK sure, beneficiaries earning over $26,000 might choose to contribute 4% to KiwiSaver.

              The key point here is that if we had a zero rated tax threshold I would agree more with the idea that taxing people to give it back to them is good social policy. Because it would provide most benefit to low earners and non tax payers. However the tax paid by a person earning $26,000 would be $3,570. I wonder if we polled these people what they would choose, $1,040 less tax taken or $1,040 added to KiwiSaver. I guess nanny knows best what’s good for low earners and it’s not her fault if they can’t afford 4% of their earnings to access it.

              Meanwhile higher earners don’t thank them enough for funding their tax credits and I get called a fool for pointing it out.

              • Lanthanide

                burt, you still don’t get it.
                 
                Someone who earns $10,000 a year, can choose to take some of their after-tax pay and deposit it, voluntarily, into kiwisaver, and get the $1040 “tax credit”.
                 
                Btw, I’m just highlighting the fact that you don’t know what you’re talking about. You’re welcome.

      • burt 8.1.2

        Would you feel better if I said $1,400 needs to be extracted to deliver $1,040. You only have to pay $360/year to get your own money back…..

        Felix – perhaps you could direct credit your pay to me and I’ll give some of it back to you and you can think I’m fabulous for giving you free money ????

        • felix 8.1.2.1

          No burt I don’t think I’ll do that as we have a system already in place which works far more efficiently than your fantasy one.

          Thanks anyway.

      • burt 8.1.3

        You might also want to look at this;

        http://wheresmytaxes.co.nz/

        IRD costs us $1,445.71 each every year….

        But hey, if you like paying people to give your own money back to you then sure – keep your head in the sand and pretend it is free money.

        • Draco T Bastard 8.1.3.1

          Translated:
          Oh noes, we have to pay to have necessary work done, Woe is meeeee!

          Fuck you’re an idiot burt, clinging to oversimplified slogans that totally misrepresent the complexities of the issue you’re trying to address.

          • burt 8.1.3.1.1

            What are you on about Draco ? Sure there is a cost to managing the scheme and that is necessary. But are you really saying it’s essential to collect money from us to give much of it directly back to us ?

            Hell if you think that is necessary then please let me manage your income for you – I’ll only take a small cut for being the middle man who gives it directly back to you – a function you seem to think is necessary.

            • Draco T Bastard 8.1.3.1.1.1

              No you fucken moron, I’m saying that it’s necessary to have the IRD and at $1500 per year each is pretty damn cheap. Hell, some accountants charge more than that for simple book keeping on one persons accounts.

              • burt

                Yes, and if they choose to add it too their own superannuation scheme (KiwiSaver or not) then they pay nobody for that financial exchange.Why take it off low earners in the first place?

                I know nanny needs to live, but really, how many minimum wage level workers contribute 4% to KiwiSaver to get the same benefit higher earners are getting for doing something they have probably always done?

                Now if the first $1,040 in income tax paid each year was credited to your KiwiSaver scheme rather than having to put hard cold cash in there then sure recycling (churn) makes sense.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  That, as expected, fails to make any sense.

                  How much of the $1500 per year each that we’re paying goes into administering Kiwisaver? Or, to put it in terms that you might be able to understand, The $1500 covers more than just the administration of Kiwisaver.

                  Why take it off them in the first place? Because it caters to human nature and so becomes a more reliable way of getting people saving for their retirement. And it’s not given straight back to them but put in an account that they can’t touch until they retire.

                  As I said, clinging on to simplistic slogans that fail to engage the complexities of the issues that you’re trying to address.

                  • burt

                    Hey Dracko, I like getting paid others peoples tax to do what I have always done as well, but that’s not making it good social policy.

              • Colonial Viper

                The best efficiency is when the IRD collects money from tax payers, and uses it to pay the Chinese Government the interest that we owe them on our loans.

                Instead of using that tax money to, you know, provide public services and core infrastructure for New Zealanders.

                • burt

                  Yes CV, the empty kitty and the stalled domestic economy has forced borrowing. Think back though CV, remember Cullen talking about saving for a rainy day. Well he paid of debt but didn’t save much and over bid for a rusty old train set just before he left office. He seemed to think the sun would shine forever.

                  Do you honestly think Labour would have continued their surpluses had they stayed in power?

                  Just like 1990-1993 all over again and forelock tugging apologists blame National ! Unbelievable.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    real simple reasons to hold National responsible:

                    they have held the reins of power for 2.5 years
                    they gave tax cuts to advantage the already rich ahead of all others
                    they bailed out rich investors involved in high risk speculative activity
                    they have no plan or way out other than to sell the family silver

                    Cullen 9 straight years of surpluses, English 3 years straight as a loser.

                    • Mac1

                      And they told lies to get into power in 2008. No change to GST, Kiwisave, Working for Families. Told lies, had no plan apart from enrich more the already rich, total failure as a budget and as a government.

                      Labout had 9 years of low unemployment, surpluses and responsible fiscal management. No comparison, really, CV.

                    • burt

                      9 Years of surplus eh…

                      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/budget-2008/news/headlines.cfm?c_id=1501935

                      The deteriorating state of the Government books show that New Zealanders are hurting from the combination of the economic…

                      The government’s bank balance has moved further into the red. New Zealand’s fiscal position worsened in March…

                      All the growth in the Treasury’s December economic and fiscal update is in the wrong things – such as unemployment, fiscal deficits and Crown debt…..

                      Investment losses unveiled in today’s crown accounts are higher than expected but the overall plunge into the red is in line with predictions, National’s finance spokesman Bill English says.

                      The government’s financial statements show the crown operating balance was $757m in deficit at September 30, against a forecast surplus of $943m…

                      You shouldn’t repeat people who just say shit because it fits the way they wish it were CV. .

                    • Colonial Viper

                      That’s a bullshit link burt, it doesn’t go anywhere where that quote is supposedly from.

                      English – 3 deficit strikes and he’s out :)

                      And I just found this from Cullen from the same article you little shit

                      Once assets were taken into account the Crown’s net financial position was positive, standing at about 5.7 per cent of GDP.

                      “This strong balance sheet position vindicates the Government’s decision not to blow the surplus in good times.

                      Cullen saved for a rainy day and English has blown it all and then some in less than 3 years.

                  • felix

                    burt, I’ve forgotten what your main issue with all this was.

                    Can you remind me please?

  9. Jum 9

    It was most interesting to hear Amy Adams at 5.18pm today telling us that Union Members do not work hard.

    Unions might like to pass that comment on to their members and families.

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    New Zealand – you have been warned. You vote John and Don in this year, and you can expect things to keep sliding backwards in an increasingly ugly way.

    • chris73 10.1

      Exactly, Johns told us what hes expecting to do so if (when) hes re-elected it’ll be because we want it to happen

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  • Hard News: Friday Music: Out there in the world
    Friday Music posts here don't generally have much to do with my day job helping make a media TV show, but next week's Media Take is an exception. We're putting together a New Zealand music month-themed programme and one of the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Government announces plan to grow Auckland housing bubble
    The key initiative in yesterday’s budget is a plan to grow Auckland’s housing bubble. Auckland’s housing bubble is projected to take over from dairy farming as the fastest-growing sector of the New Zealand economy. Consider a typical Mangere housewife. For… ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    1 day ago
  • Paul F Tompkins: The undisputed king of podcasts
    When Paul F Tompkins got into comedy in the mid 1980s, the formats with which he’s achieved most renown and popularity didn’t actually exist. “None of them did!” he yells, laughing, into the phone during an interview about stage… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015: What does it mean?
    ...
    1 day ago
  • What next?
    It feels really, really surreal to nearly be done with my degree. And terrifying, mostly. Right now I have a single 2000 word essay remaining for Politics of Protest and then three exams mid-way through next month, and… that’s it.… ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 day ago
  • Solo parents forced to work; but where are the quality jobs?
    The Government is increasing the expectations of paid work from solo parents without any thought as to where the jobs will be, the Council of Trade Unions said today. “There are already 100,000 part time workers who are wanting more secure… ...
    CTUBy andrew.chick
    1 day ago
  • April-15 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • April-14 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    2 days ago
  • Children and steady-as-you-go – but how steady?
    There are three political dimensions to the budget’s star “children in hardship” item. One is John Key’s ownership. That fits his protestations of concern about disadvantaged children — though action has been slow coming. He made his pile in… ...
    Colin JamesBy Colin James
    2 days ago
  • Thoughts on budget 2015
    There’s a Herald summary here. I’ve been saying for a while that ‘neoliberalism’ – ie a belief in the efficacy of free markets, the distortionary evil of taxes and benefits and the minimalisation of the state – is dead. There… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    2 days ago
  • What if your MP was decided on the flip of a coin?
    The provincial election in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island finally came to an end a couple of days ago when its last MLA was declared elected following a judicial recount.(What - you didn't know that Prince Edward Island… ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Budget 2015
    From the outset, the slogan for yesterday’s Budget – “The Plan Is Working” – begged to be mocked. There’s actually a plan for the national economy? Who knew? And its been working for whom, exactly? Not for families in poverty,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific
    Speech – New Zealand Government I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak at this International Conference on the Future of Asia.22 May 2015 Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific (speech delivered to 2015 Nikkei Forum, Tokyo,… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    2 days ago
  • Budget 2015: Media releases and tertiary education coverage
    We will update this page over the next few days with media releases and news stories on Budget 2015 and its effect on tertiary education and on employment. Radio NZ: Govt tightens education purse strings The Government is expecting fewer… ...
    2 days ago

  • How many victims missing out on protection?
    Hundreds of domestic abuse victims could be missing out on getting protection orders because they are unable to get legal aid, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“In the last two years some 351 people who applied for legal aid for… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Government kicks hardworking whanau
    A major incentive to help young Kiwis and people on low incomes to start saving has been kicked out from under them with the National-led Government ramming through short-sighted legislation under Urgency today, Labour’s Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says.… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Speculator tax political stunt gone wrong
    Bill English’s admission he doesn’t know whether National’s new speculator tax will have any effect shows last weekend’s announcement by the Prime Minister was a desperate political stunt, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “This Government is so desperate to… ...
    6 hours ago
  • The value of parenting
    This week, as part of the Budget, the government introduced a bill to address child poverty. This bill will require parents receiving income support to look for part-time work once their youngest child is three years of age rather than… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    9 hours ago
  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    1 day ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 day ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    1 day ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    1 day ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    1 day ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 day ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    1 day ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    1 day ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    1 day ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    2 days ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    2 days ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    2 days ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    3 days ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • State of origin
    Kiwis are increasingly concerned about the food they give their families. New Zealand consumers have the right to know where their food has come from, particularly when it involves animals, and should be able to expect our Government to label… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    4 days ago
  • Relationships Aotearoa
    It is disturbing that Relationships Aotearoa, a voluntary organisation set up in 1949 to help couples struggling with their relationships following the upheavals of World War II, may be forced to close, says Acting Spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community… ...
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • House prices to a crack $1 million in 17 months
    The average Auckland home is on track to cost $1 million in 17 months’ time if nothing substantial is done to rein in soaring price rises, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland’s house prices have skyrocketed 63 per cent… ...
    4 days ago
  • Vital support services can’t be left in lurch
    The National Government has big questions to answer about how a provider of services to thousands of vulnerable New Zealanders is set to fold, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. Relationships Aotearoa which provides support and counselling to families, individuals… ...
    5 days ago
  • Treasury and IRD on a capital gains tax
    Both the Treasury and IRD have been advising the National Government on the benefits of a capital gains tax. Documents released to the Green Party under an Official Information Act request show that John Key has been selective with the… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • Charity legislation needs review
    It is unacceptable that the big corporate based charities claim  millions in annual income tax exemptions, while small community based and operated non-profit organisations  struggle to gain official charity status, Labour’s acting spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community Sector Louisa… ...
    5 days ago
  • John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis
    John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed… ...
    5 days ago
  • Keep our Assets Christchurch Campaign: An update
    I recently presented my submission to keep Christchurch Council assets at the Christchurch City Council’s public hearings on its 10 year plan on 13 May. The hearings are live-streamed and recorded so you can watch them on www.ccc.govt.nz. The Council’s… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    5 days ago
  • John Key finally admits there’s a housing crisis
    John Key’s weak measures to rein in the astronomical profits property speculators are making are an admission – finally – that there is a housing crisis, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “But yet again National is tinkering with the housing… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government stifles voices in CYFs review
    The Government’s exclusion of the Māori Women’s Welfare League in a panel on the future of CYFs is a cynical ploy to stifle views, says Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “It's unbelievable that a significant review on the future… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Otago Chamber of Commerce
    Thank you very much for the opportunity to be here today. It’s a pleasure as always to be back in the town that raised me. Growing up in St Kilda meant that there was one thing that was a big… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key can’t just be Prime Minister for Parnell
    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In… ...
    1 week ago
  • Stop the conversions
    This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some  lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • More regional jobs go in Corrections reshape
    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka face closure… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s climate meetings off to a bumpy start
    On Wednesday, I attended a hui and an evening meeting that the Government had organised in Nelson as part of its climate change consultation tour, to support the Nelson community telling the Government to take meaningful action on climate change.… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers the only ones left feeling blue
    Ministry of Social Development bosses could have saved themselves thousands of dollars in consultants’ fees by providing staff with rose-tinted spectacles, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. A report out today reveals the Ministry is spending over half a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Why are the regions still facing restrictions?
    Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today. “Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best… ...
    1 week ago
  • The high costs of weak environmental regulation
    Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is described on the Department of Conservation website as “Canterbury’s largest and New Zealand’s fifth largest [lake], and an internationally important wildlife area.” But the lake is also polluted by nutrients leaching from farms in the catchment.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Submissions to Wellington City Council on their Gambling Venues Policy
    Every three years Councils across the country are required to check that their gambling venue policies are still fit for purpose and they can choose to consult on their policy if they are thinking of making changes. Councils don’t have… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank action shows Govt out of touch and out of ideas
    The Reserve Bank’s unprecedented measures today show it understands the serious risks of the overheating housing market – in complete contrast to John Key’s refusal to acknowledge the crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The Bank is right to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Send us your snaps: 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year we've hit a milestone. We're turning 25.To help celebrate a quarter of a century, please send us your photos from the last 25 years of the Green Party Aotearoa New Zealand! Note: Photos must be jpg, gif or… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year the Green Party sends 25. To help us celebrate a quarter of a century please send us you photos of 25 years of the Green Party!Photos must be jpg,gif or png and smaller than 2MB. If you are… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bay growth plan too little too late
    Today’s Bay of Plenty growth study from MBIE is another example of Government spin - lots of talk but little action, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “This is a region that desperately needs to develop the downstream processing… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government bows to ACC pressure
     The Government has finally buckled to pressure from Labour and the New Zealand public in making a half billion dollar cut to ACC levies, but the full benefits are two years away,” says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “$500 million over… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • False figures cloud Auckland transport facts
    The Prime Minister should apologise and issue a correction after both he and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have been caught out misrepresenting facts on Auckland’s transport spending, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Both John Key and Simon Bridges have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt books confirm National can’t post surplus
    The last publication of the Government’s books before the budget shows National will break its promise of seven years and two election campaigns and fail to get the books in order, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government is… ...
    2 weeks ago

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